Friday, January 29

Sanity with Children

If this has been a test
I cannot see the reason
But maybe knowing
I don't know is part of getting through
I tried to do what's best
But faith has made it easy
To see the best thing I can do
Is to put my trust in You.
"You Know Better Than I" from Joseph: King of Dreams

We had our first monthly Relief Society meeting this week. The topic was on mental illness, depression, and really just ways to keep sane even if you don't have chemical excuses. One thing that was brought up was how to treat your kids.

And since I have sort of lost my sanity (or at least all compassion) in the last few weeks due to lack of sleep, I figure it needs to be a goal. Its not like I have been physically punishing Alice, but sometimes when she starts literally jumping on Thomas' head then covers his face with a pillow when he cries I react in a less than loving manner.

Picking up a laughing and as far as I can tell completely EVIL 2 year old and dropping them on the floor seems like a good solution. Until she hits the corner/leg/blocks and gets a bruise on her face...or bites her lip and bleeds all over me...or just cries and its not "you took my toy" tears.

Then I realize that I am abusing my child. Because I am bigger than her. And that will not make her stop jumping on someone smaller than her. So I have stopped all moving/removing of Alice. I simply move Thomas.

We also watched a little slide show I made when Alice was 3 months old with a compilation of photos. She LOVED it. "Awww." "Baby." "Ooo, baby." She was really sad when I insisted I needed to go to the bathroom and stood up and left her on the computer chair. We talked about how we treat babies and we are gentle with them. Then I let her hold Thomas...until he cried.

Line upon line.

Wednesday, January 27


I watch the ripples change their size
But never leave the stream
Of warm impermanence
So the days float through my eyes
But still the days seem the same
And these children that you spit on
As they try to change their worlds
Are immune to your consultations
They're quite aware of what they're going through

This is the song that went through my head when I stood in front of the mirror this evening wondering how things would end up.

No we aren't at a major intersection in our lives, and I had no deep philosophical thoughts on my mind. But I was standing there staring at myself with scissors in hand thinking, my hair needs a trim.

Four inches seemed like a good trim to me. Enough to feel like I cut my hair, but long enough to wear a pony tail.

Then it happened.


You know. I think those kids I spit on just came along and decided to change things.

So I reverted to my typical "I need a change" most and cut the hair short. Not boy short, but chin length bob short. I would take a picture, but I can hear the rumblings of my second born's rear, so I know my time here is numbered.

*I also applied mousse (for the first time in years, ha).

** Oh, and I saw a white hair. And not a 'I fit in one.' This bugger was shorter, curlier and sticking straight up in the part. I think that's a sign of old people white hair. I think. Or maybe it's stress hairs that change texture.

*** Must research this.

**** Must stop this thing with the starred notes. But I have to note. The best part about today, I got a shower.

Monday, January 25

Ugh sickness

I hate having them in my home. Alice had a runny nose last week. Thomas got a stuffy nose. Now Alice is hoarse and freaking obnoxious. Thomas is crying constantly (for him). And I am so sick of getting snot rubbed onto my shirt/arm/Thomas. Even worse, Alice really really wants to hold Thomas. I doubt its because she wants to kill him, though it appears that murder is on her mind. Instead I assume she wants to go to sleep, and she wants to sleep with him. But it took me all morning to get him to sleep, so I don't care what she wants.

Oh, and I am super sick of changing poopy diapers. I mean for real. Save it for an hour people. That is all I ask. In one hour, Daniel will be home to take over diaper patrol.

I blame Daniel's co-worker who has been out with a sick kid since Friday...and probably passed the virus to him who came home and touched Alice and she decided to get sick from it. For the record, Daniel is not sick. Of course not. Only the one that gets into things and the one she attacks are sick.

I think a 6pm bedtime will happen tonight.

Sunday, January 24

Its almost been 3 weeks!

This was our first week without Daniel at home to help out. I admit there were a couple of days that were pretty yucky. One involved Thomas hitting the 2 week growth spurt leaving me with virtually no sleep. Daniel took an hour of unscheduled paid time off that day. We also have eaten out WAY too many times this week. Its called, I made WAY too many pasta freezer meals. Plus there are a few of them that we really don't care for, and even the ones we like we don't want to eat twice in the same week. Looks like we might need to actually meal plan. Then we won't run out of milk, forcing Daniel to wake up at 4am and getting milk before work tomorrow.

This week we bought a WiiFit. So far we all like it, and its motivating us to do something in the way of moving. I know the WiiFit it not a real fitness routine, but its better than nothing. Plus, it is sort of fun to do as a family. Even though you have to be 3 to actually do any games, so Alice can't really do anything. She still likes running around and 'playing' with us. Oh, and the fact that they weigh you all the time...yeah that might be motivation as well.

Perhaps that also leads to the idea that I should make us a menu for the a rule. Or follow one that I already have. That makes me sound really lazy huh. I even have weekly menus that I paid for, and haven't really used. There are other medical reasons to do things. But, we don't go into that.

Today I got told I was getting officially released from working with the cub scouts next Sunday. Sweet! So is Daniel, but he is getting another calling, so its not like he is calling free. I am, fortunately, down to only TWO callings. Oh yeah. Calling freedom.

Oh and we weighed Thomas on the WiiFit last night. Without clothes, but with a light flannel blanket, he was weighing in at over 11 lbs. I don't think Alice was 11 lbs at 3 months. There is another large baby in our ward (he was born at 10lbs and it was all natural! of course the poor mom was in labor for almost 3 days). I was talking with his mom in the mother's lounge and he is about 2 months old and weighing in at 15 lbs. I think Thomas is trying for that as a goal.

Friday, January 22

Umbilical Granulomas

Ever heard of one? Its sort of common. No one knows the cause. Its supposedly easy to treat.

What happens is that after the cord stump falls of there is a tiny tree of baby in the hole. That wouldn't really bother me. Its the oozing. And the inability to use cloth diapers (because they come up too high and cover the stump risking infection).

Disposable diapers stink. Literally. It's a combo of baby powder and chemicals. Yum. Plus they are expensive when we already own diapers.

Anyway, we called the doctor and had Thomas' gut looked at. Then they put silver nitrate on it. He cried. Dr. Riorden said the granuloma/tree is pretty large and we might need a follow up treatment in a week. Yeah. We will.

The gut was oozing when I changed the 1:30am diaper. Some oozing should be normal in the first 24 hours. Its still annoying.

Thomas might be a real expensive child if this turns out to be something else. Like oozing from his bladder or GI system. The kid did have a super fat cord. It would make sense that the giant knot in it affected things as well. If that is the case he will need surgery. I don't know how much I want an infant in surgery. So lets hope the oozing is the "might have gray oozing in the first 24 hours" and not a sign of expen$ive thing$ to come.

*At least I have had more than 4 hous of sleep so far tonight. Yesterday was a different story and it was torture. Not to mention that all I ate was sugar until dinner...and that was pizza. Alice was also sleep deprived, so it was a cranky achy day.

Wednesday, January 20

Fitness plan for Moms

But a watermelon in the winter.
Allow the toddler to eat a fair bit of it.
Commence the changing marathon.

Lugging around an infant also helps.
As do the dang it's that result in the carpet needing steam cleaned. We have had one of those today. Because I didn't get the diaper back on quickly enough. Dang it.
I think its time to start laundry again.

I wonder if Daniel will be working until 7pm like he asked. I told him to try and get someone else to volunteer first. He told them he had to talk with the Mrs. I told him he needs to convince the other girl to stay since she missed yesterday.

Tuesday, January 19

Our First Day Out

It was torture to say the least. Here is the rundown.

Saturday night Alice screamed yelled and cried until super late at night (maybe midnight, maybe later its hard to know). Inconsolable toddlers are not my forte. Nor are they Daniel's but he has to deal with her mostly since I have my own parasite.

Sunday we tried going to bed at our 'normal' time of 6pm. Alice took a 2 minute bath, then tried to crawl into bed with me. Daniel took her to her room. Alice crumples into a ball and wails.

Monday morning we all get up at 6:30 to take Daniel to work. Alice crumples into a ball crying because we woke her up.

We pick up breakfast on the way to Daniel's work. She refuses to eat it. She crumples as much as possible into her car seat crying because she is holding her shoes instead of wearing them. I put her shoes on.

We drive home and go inside to let her eat her usual breakfast while I feed Thomas. We have to be at the doctor's office in 2 hours. Change everyone's diapers. Change clothes. Stop Alice from the pounce attack on Thomas. Alice crumples on the floor crying.

Feed Thomas again.
Change diapers again.
Grab the diaper bag, car seat, and Alice's shoes.
Get everyone prepped and leave.
Find parking spot.
Get Alice's right shoes on again.
Put her hat on her.
Carry Thomas and hold Alice's hand across the wet drippy parking lot.
Find the elevator out of order.
Alice crumples on floor crying.
Walk across hospital to find another elevator that is working.
Alice falls down wailing in front of this elevator.
Other people get in line for the elevator.
Patience thin.
Get on elevator.
Alice stands up from floor and leans on my leg, still crying.
Get off at 3rd floor.
2 steps off elevator, Alice crumples to the floor and starts crying.
Wish Daniel's work number were programmed in the cell phone.
Vow to never take both kids to the doctor with me again.
Repeat every 3 steps to the doctor's office.

Temporary reprieve. The doctor's office has a water dispenser. No wailing, small mess. Time to calm down.

Go back to visit. Feel stressed out. BP looks great.
Bring up birth control.
Consider happy pills, but decide to give it another day or two without Daniel before getting some.
Alice tries to jump on Thomas. Well, succeeds really.
Hold Thomas.
Pass Thomas to a nurse and shed clothes for a peri check.
Alice gets mad and grabs my shoes and coat.
Alice cries because Thomas left and we didn't.

Get things stared at. Alice enjoys it (freak).
Get dressed.
ALmost forget car seat.
Put Thomas in car seat.
Walk to lobby.
Pay front desk.
Begin walk back to car.

Elevator functional.
Take elevator down.
Walk outside.
Alice refuses to hold hands.
Alice hold hand behind her to avoid me.
I steer her down the sidewalk and not into the parking lot.
Alice wants to play in some rocks at the curb.
Alice crumples to the ground.
Alice gets coated in black sand/salt/exhaust muck.
Alice flips out because she is dirty.
Drag screaming Alice across parking lot to car.
Car follows us for our parking spot.
Put wailing Alice in car.
Put Thomas in car.
Put self in car.
Drive home imagining what sanity must feel like.

Thursday, January 14

Rude Baby

Growth spurt #1...7-10days old. For us this happens only in the middle of the night.

We tried to go to bed at 8pm. I have gotten maybe an hour of sleep since then. Its 2:30AM. For real man. My body my choice.

Daniel is getting dressed to buy a baby bottle so I can try and sleep at night.

For real. Why can't he cluster feed at a time when Alice is awake. Punk child.

Wednesday, January 13

Dishwasher Disaster!

Its been a long day. Alice has made it clear that for her to be tolerable during the day we have to put her to bed at 6pm (well at least start bath time then). This way she can go to bed and sleep until 7-8am and not be a total terror all day from tiredness (she refuses to nap any more). Thomas and I did nap on the couch. During Snow White. That is one freaky movie in my opinion.

Anyway, I noticed a smell like melting plastic after the movie was over and Daniel was starting to play some Zelda Twilight Princess. I sent him to investigate. There is one thing we DO NOT need, and thats a fire in the middle of winter with a brand new baby in the house.

So he goes to the kitchen and after a bit I hear him putting dishes away, so I assume he found nothing that was the source of the strange smell. I have this super power of smell still, so for all I knew it was coming from the neighbor's side of the duplex and we wouldn't know until our side was on fire too.

After a bit Daniel comes back in holding the silverware rack that goes inside the door of our dishwasher. It had come apart somehow while the dishwasher was running and it fell down onto the heating element in the dishwasher.

Thank goodness for my super scent capabilities! If it had gone the entire heated dry cycle we might have actually had a fire. We would have at least had some noxious fumes to deal with. Luckily its above freezing, so we left the front door open for a bit to air things out.

Disaster Averted! And, I think the silverware rack is still usable. Just sort of mangled at the bottom, so it won't stand on its own on the counter.

A Baby Story

Remember that show on TLC, if its even still being shown I haven't had cable since before we were married. Anyway, this is our non-videographed, non-photographed week. SO here we go...

He finally showed up at 10:12pm and I was stitched back up before 11pm. Lucky.

In brief, we went in to get my water broke at 7:30am. They didn't break it until almost 10 though. Then several hours and many many laps of the floor later, we were dilated from a 4 to a 5.

Several more hours later I started getting tired, and we had regular contractions so I chose to get some happy feeling drugs. Stadol - a fancy opiate that makes you feel floaty and hear giggly happy ladies in the hall (Daniel says he didn't hear them). Then I asked to try the jaccuzi tub since I knew we couldn't have any more of the floaty drugs within 1 hour of giving birth, but i was dilated to an 8 and they told me no way. Those were the most painful 2 cm ever.

Anyway, we started pushing and the contractions started getting farther and farther apart. Plus we were making no progress. All that was happening was I was pushing his head into my pelvic bone which caused main for me and bruising for him (he still has bloody eyeballs, though the facial swelling is gone).

The doc said we needed pitocin to get the contractions coming faster and stronger, and asked if I wanted an epidural at that point so I could get 30 minutes to sleep and recover some energy.

Well the epidural didn't take, and then time was just a blur. I know the nurse gave me some more stadol at one point but mostly I wimpered in pain as the anesthesiologist gave me 2 booster doses and they had me lie in my left side. Once the pain subsided I slept a little which was awesome. Right around 10pm they had me try pushing again to see if it looked like anything would happen. And yay it did!

Thomas came out head, ball of cord, then body. He had the cord wrapped around his body 3 times and had a true knot in it to boot (hence the ball of cord). He weighed 9lbs 2oz and was 20 3/4 inches long and aside from the war wounds, he passed with flying colors. He also got his cord and placenta sent to pathology thanks to the knot. Go him.

We have pictures here.

He is mostly not puffy in these and we haven't gotten around to taking more. Yes lazy. Well, I think we got a couple on the digital camera, but the battery died, and I haven't recharged them yet.

Oh, and I might change the date on this post to make it seem less lazy. Then again, meh its only been a week since we got home from the hospital.

Wednesday, January 6

We are home!

No energy to give the detailed post Daniel promised of me. Wasn't that sweet of him :-)

Anyway, we saw the snow start around noon and high-tailed it out of the hospital. I guess it was about 2pm when we got home. Partly because we left the cake behind, and we needed that cake. Alice ate about half of it when we got home. Then after a couple of temper tantrums from Alice after I gave Daniel a list of everything to buy from the store so we could hole up for the weather tomorrow everyone took a nap.

I woke up around 5 and Daniel had already woken up and spent a good 30 minutes on the phone with the insurance asking about the prescription coverage and got info for adding Thomas to our insurance as well.

Then while he was gone Thomas woke up crying. I started trying to feed him and Alice woke up and got VERY loud asking for Daddy. Finally I figured everyone needed diaper changes (myself included because lets face it I am essentially in diapers at this point). So I carried Thomas to Alice's room and I told her to get in bed with me.

I am supposed to try and avoid stairs if I can. This should be interesting to say the least. At least I have Daniel at home for another week.

Its sort of crazy to think that Thomas isn't even 48 hours old yet. Life seems pretty chaotic with Alice wanting TONS of attention from me and trying to snuggle or something with Thomas' head. He is sleeping in our room in the co-sleeper right now. We will probably be heading to bed soon, but I figured Alice wanted some parental 2 on 1 attention. So she got it.

P.S. We bought Zelda Twilight Princess for Christmas(ish) and Daniel has already commented that its very engaging. I think the sword play is his favorite so far. And I can see our house getting super clean in the next few days. Having 2 kids will force us into more structure in several areas in the house.

Tuesday, January 5

A New Chapter

Greetings from the one who doesn't blog much...

At 10:12 pm today, Rebecca gave birth to our son Thomas Ryan Cook. Weighing in at 9 pounds 2 ounces. He is officially more that 20% larger than Alice was when she was born. He also has hair... that's dark and a completely different nose!

He looks like a grumpy man with a bruised face... we'll work on getting some pictures soon. I suppose...

So, if you're followers of us, you will know that we were unsure of the name for quite some time. But I've been pretty confident about the first name ever since I had a mental vision type thing that told me his name would be Thomas. After I thought that, it just seemed right then I thought... Oh noes, people will accuse us of naming him after an Apostle, thinking Bible... It later occurred to me that that is also the modern prophet's name.

Anyway, I just want to make it clear that he is not named after anyone. He is Thomas because it is his name.

So... I'm not much for details, but I'll give you some. We went to the hospital to get induced. Arriving at about 7:45. They took awhile to get us started and Rebecca wanted to try going a more natural route than we did with Alice. After the ordeal, we've pretty much been convinced that Rebecca's body doesn't like to let children be born without pain killers at least... The umbilical cord was tied in a knot, and wrapped around him 3 times... Woot.

Anyway, I'm sure Rebecca will tell the story much more interestingly... cheers.

Sunday, January 3

News on the Baby

1. We are still pregnant. We have started getting phone messages checking on us though. Sorry to disappoint, but this kid did not want to be born in 2009 or on New Years. Lets all hope his goal isn't Chinese New Year. Seriously, we have had all these 'signs of labor' and then nothing. I am sure part of it was his sensitivity to the forced family togetherness in a bona fide blizzard (we were declared a disaster area by the state, lucky) since he had dropped at 37 weeks and had moved back up some at 38 weeks just before Christmas.

2. We have successfully completed 5 days of a 'bedtime routine' with Alice that has ended in her sleeping in her bed, alone, for a good 12 hours. She does seem to be more tired looking in the morning, so we wonder if she is restless, but since she goes to sleep between 7:30 and 8:30 each night and sleeps all night I figure she is ok.

3. We spend 3 hours wandering around stores yesterday. Add walking a lot to the list of things that DO NOT induce labor. Alice loved it. She has had a little cabin fever lately since its been freaking cold, Daniel hasn't been working, and with church canceled too, we haven't gotten out of the house much in a few weeks now. We bought some thermal curtains to cover our front door. It need some weatherstripping added to it to stop the drafty areas, but due to procrastination, we just needed something to make it feel less cold in the house. So $50 later we installed curtains over the door, and threw a blanket on the floor to boot. (I will actually make a door snake when I don't have a baby in my butt any longer.)

So yeah. As I told my RS president (who left us a message and has been checking the baby announcements in the paper) I fully expect to be at church today. Especially since its in less than 3 hours. I am not sure how much we will like 9am church. It might be awesome, but having to wake to an alarm is the down side. Well not now, since i wake up at 5am or earlier, but once the child is here. I think I want biscuits for breakfast. Yum. Food.